green wood workshop – 1 day

Green Wood is freshly felled, still sappy wood. To work it requires a set of simple techniques based on an understanding of how wood reacts – both to the tools, and to the drying and shrinking processes. Because it is green, the wood is soft and easy to work with hand tools, and because of this, green woodwork creates little waste, and can utilise small trees and logs. It is therefore green in all senses of the word – especially as at Bore Place the trees are felled as part of ongoing woodland restoration and sustainable management. Our courses and volunteer days are about learning woodcraft and helping with the conservation of Bore Place.

Pole lathe turning has traditionally also been known as “bodging”  Originally this was the term used for pole-lathe turners who turned out just the cylindrical parts of a Windsor chair (eg the legs).  Originally located in woods at the edges of towns, their pole lathe construction was so simple and easy to move that it made more sense to take the tools to the woodland, rather than the wood to a workshop.  The pole lathes we use on our courses follow a similar design, and are treddle lathes.  They do also use some sawn wood however!

The term bodging can also be used to mean making something using only the tools and materials you have to hand, but still producing something serviceable.  Not to be confused with “botching” which of course means something completely different!

We have made some changes to our Course Program – please see our Course Update page for more information.

date:13 April 2024 (one place available)
12 April 2025
overview:an introduction to working wood straight from the log. Make a mallet and then work on the shaving horse and pole lathe to make a garden dibber, rounders bat, porridge stirrer, spatula or honey drizzled. Suitable for beginners.
start time:9.30am tea/introductions for 10am start
lunch:approx 1pm – 2pm
please bring a packed lunch. Hot drinks will be provided.
finish time:approx 4.30pm
cost:£80 per person (2024)
£100 per person (2025)
tutor:Steve De St Croix
cancellations:we will provide a full refund if you cancel your place more than 14 days in advance of the course start date. Please note that we will be unable to refund your course fee or transfer you to another course if you cancel your place less than 14 days before the start of the course.
what to wear:wear sturdy shoes or boots at all times. Please also wear warm, comfortable clothes that are suitable for the current weather conditions. You will be outside for much of the course.
course size:maximum of 4 participants
what to bring:all tools and materials will be provided, but please feel free to bring along any interesting tools!
how to book:Booking Form
location:Courses and volunteer days are held at Bore Place, between Edenbridge and Sevenoaks, Kent. Bore Place is an environmental and educational charity on a 500 acre organic dairy farm, set in beautiful low weald countryside. Converted farm buildings and a Jacobean Manor House offer accommodation if required, with walks and local pubs to enjoy when you’re not wooding! Directions will be sent to you once you’ve booked on a course and can also be accessed from the Workshop Directions Page.
accommodation:Depending on availability, there are cottages to rent on site for £185 per night (minimum of 2 nights). It is essential that you contact Bore Place in advance to book accommodation. Please call 01732 463255 or email
There are also two beautiful yurts and two cosy shepherds huts on site - see Free Range Glamping for more information.
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John Waller, Underwoodsman
Average rating:  
 1 reviews
 by Lesley and Ralph
Great Day

We had a lovely day in a small group with Steve, a very knowledgeable individual. We came away knowing a lot more about greenwood and how to work it. Thoroughly enjoyed using the shave horses and pole lathes. We were very pleased with our mallets and spurtles (we now know what these are!).